Please tell me if this is too graphic to give to a therapist you never met.
New therapist I have who specializes in dissociation disorders and wanted me to start off by writing about my childhood abuse which always points to the cause of the depersonalization disorder I have. I want some feedback, anything that might grammar problems, anything, Please. Thanks.
My earliest memories of my childhood begin around the age of five. At this time I was living in El Salvador where I was born. My parents had moved to the U.S. because finding work with decent pay was hard to come. I stayed with my aunt, my father's sister, and her family from ages three to six. I would later join my parents in Long Island, New York in 1989, the year my brother was born. My aunt turned part of her home into a small convenience store. This is what she had to rely on in order to make a living. I slept in the same bedroom with a male cousin who was only a few years older than I was. My aunt's friend also owned and operated a convenience store from her home, and I was taken there one day while my aunt helped her friend out on a busy day. I was left in a bedroom with two teenage boys and watched television on the floor while they laid on their bunk beds. My aunt checked on me once throughout the time I had stayed there. It was only a couple of minutes later after I had arrived that I felt someone grab me from behind and cover my mouth with his hand. He placed me on the top bed while I tried to scream. I laid on my stomach while the other one forced himself inside me, and all I remember was suffering unimaginable pain. It lasted a few minutes, as they took turns. At one point I heard footsteps getting closer to the door, and that's when they immediately stopped what they were doing and pretended to be watching TV. I tried to act normal as much as I could. My aunt opened the door and took a quick look inside but didn't notice anything out of the ordinary. She left, and as soon as she did, they proceeded to rape me, and all I remember was wishing for it to stop. It's now been twenty-one years later, and I still haven't been successful at recovering the entire memory of the gang rape. I don't remember how it stopped or when it did. What I am certain, though, is that these boys were total strangers to me. They weren't older than fourteen. It was the first and last time I went inside this house.
Later that same year, I had come back from a recent visit from the doctor's office for a regular physical check up. He revealed to my aunt that I had been sexually abused. She questioned me several times and demanded to know the identity of the person who had done this to me. I didn't know what exactly was done to me. I didn't understand it, but I knew deep inside that it was wrong. I didn't feel comfortable or safe enough to talk about it, so I simply remained quiet. She misinterpreted this as trying to protect someone from getting in trouble. She thought it was her son, the cousin I shared a bedroom with. I would sleep with my other male cousin in his bedroom for a short time until she was entirely convinced that it was safe for me to go back. The next event that took place wasn't necessarily responsible for the cause of an abuse that would last for several years, but it's what gave someone an opportunity to take advantage of me. I begged my aunt not write the letter to my parents telling them that I had been sexually abused, but she did anyway. I arrived in New York in 1989, only a few weeks after my brother was born. I clearly remember confronting my mother for leaving me behind back in Central America but never mentioned the sexual incident. One winter night that same year, my father insisted taking me to the pharmacy store to pick up a medicine for my brother because he had a high temperature. My mother agreed, and I went. I was a bit confused when he parked the car on the street curb. I thought we were heading to the pharmacy. He started talking to me about things that made me feel uncomfortable. He took out a letter out of his jacket and told me that he knew everything that had happened to me in El Salvador. He promised that he would show it to my mother if I did not allow him to touch my private area. I was shocked and scared at the same time. The whole situation was confusing to me, and I simply remained quiet, not giving him an answer. “Okay,” he said, “ I guess I will show this to your mother.” And at this, I hesitated but responded, “Okay.” It was bad enough that he knew about the sexual abuse, even though he didn't know the details since I never revealed them to my aunt. I had to protect myself, keep the secret hidden from my mother. It would have been considered an embarrassment if she ever, somehow, found out. He put his hands inside my pants and started touching me. It lasted only a few minutes. This brought feelings of betrayal and mistrust. I did not know that this was only the beginning of many more years of abuse to come. I was six-years old at the time, and the sexual abuse itself stopped when I was twelve.
I was raised in a Christian family, a Seventh Day Adventist to be more specific. It was at the church where I was taught to show obedience and respect to my parents. At the same time, however, I found many beliefs of this denomination a little too eccentric and extreme for me. Ordinary activities many people enjoy were considered forbidden, from dancing to attending a theater. Because of this, as a child and a teenager, I felt like my parents were being too overprotective. I wasn't able to experience as much freedom as I wanted to. It was not until I was in the fifth grade that I learned that what my father was doing to me in private was not only considered inappropriate and morally wrong, but also illegal. Before I knew this, I thought it was normal behavior between father and son that was meant to be kept in secret. I used sit in back of the church as I watched church members approach my father, shake his hand and smile. I, on the other hand, was looked at as being awkward, an introvert who always wore a jacket and sat in back of the church drawing dark figures. If only they knew the truth about who my father really was, I used to tell myself. He wore an invisible mask in front of these people and could easily fool them. I was the only one aware of this mask. Once a lady at church approached my mother privately and told her that she suspected that I was sexually abused. She based her conclusion on my behavior and the dark figure drawings. She wasn't a psychiatrist but was attending college to earn a degree in psychology. She advised my mother to take me to a professional. My mother told my father about this, and he refused.
The sexual abuse began only with molestation during the first years and later to other sexual acts, which included oral and intercourse. The molestation was done when my mother wasn't at home or when she wasn't in the same room we were. The other sexual acts took place in a wealthy home in Oyster Bay, New York, at my father's job. It was an upper class neighborhood, only a few minutes away from former President Theodore Roosevelt's summer house. These mansions were located near the beach and were spread apart from each other, surrounded by nature for privacy. It was here where my father used to take me on Sundays. His bosses, an Italian couple, were never home on this day, so it was safe for me to go inside their house without worrying about being caught. My father did a variety of jobs that included cleaning the house, mowing the lawn, and other labor and maintenance work. The sexual abuse began as a game. An upstairs room with couches, a screen TV, and a video game console system is where the abuse took place most of the time. It was surrounded by sliding glass doors that led to a balcony, which had a good view of the pool, flowers, and trees. My father would start off by making a deal. He would allow me to play video games if I agreed to let him do sexual things to me. Excited as any child would be when given the opportunity to play his favorite game, I easily gave in.
One of the worst memories I have is of him taking me to the attic when I was around ten years old. It was very dark inside, and I kept having this thought in my head that I wasn't going to make it alive. Sometimes he became violent when I didn't let him have his way, but he never physically abused me while having sex with me. If he kills me, I thought to myself, my small body will lay here right on this wooden floor in the attic. I would no longer by identified by my personality, my age, my beliefs, or preferences in life. I will simply be a dead corpse, and at this, I imagined my soul leaving my body. The pain of being sexually abused caused tears to come out of my eyes. It was painful just like it had been many times. I cried many times, but he never stopped. I managed to withstand the physical pain, and was glad once I left that attic. He took a picture of me once right after he had finished abusing me and I got dressed. He was talking to my mother on the phone only a few seconds ago when I sat on the couch in the living room downstairs, and he took out a camera and the bright flash caused my eyes to blink. It was unexpected, and it was this picture that remained in the family album for many years to come. There were other several incidents that were as horrifying as it was in the attic. He even sexually abused me in his bosses' own bedroom upstairs a few times. What I found very annoying and disturbing is that sometimes he would have perverted conversations while abusing me. He would ask me questions about other boys' private parts, if they had grown hair around that area or if I knew what a girl's private area looked like. I wasn't mentally prepared for these kinds of questions. I didn't understand them, and I didn't feel comfortable being asked those questions.
The abuse would of continued pass the age of twelve if he didn't have a life threatening situation. He was a soldier in the Salvadoran Civil War. He had been shot in the leg and in the back of the neck. Throughout the years, without him ever suspecting, the bullet from the back of his neck was slowly traveling upwards. It caused him headaches severe enough to find a doctor. He was prescribed medication after an X-ray was taken and the bullet was found. A risky operation had to be performed in order to remove the bullet. The doctors explained to him in detail about the procedure and that he might not make it alive. This is when the abuse suddenly stopped. We never talked about it. It was like it never happened. A few years later as a teenager, I still had the memories, but I questioned myself if they were true, if they really did happen. I didn't want to wrongly accuse my father of something he never did. I never had the guts at this time to tell anyone about these memories, but deep inside I felt like they were real. I can remember my father having a few conversations with church members at their homes or at church about the Civil War. He claimed that he had several dreams as a soldier where God revealed to him about what was about to occur. A dream he had would tell him that a certain amount of soldiers would die but that he didn't have to worry because he would be protected. He awoke only to find out that the dream had come true. It was many dreams like this, he told the church members, as they looked at him with amazement, that saved his life, that it was God's plan. After hearing this many times, I always questioned myself if God knew that this same man would later have a son and that he would end up sexually abusing him. I always ask myself even to this day if that was God's plan all along.